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Though these four divisions are connected and interwoven with one another, yet certain kinds of duties arise from each of them. As, for instance, in that part which I first described, and under which I comprehended sagacity or wisdom, consists the search after and discovery of truth; and this is the characteristic function of that virtue: for the man who is most sagacious in discovering the real truth in any subject, and who can, with the greatest perspicacity and quickness, both see and explain the grounds of it, is justly esteemed a man of the greatest understanding and discernment. From hence it follows that truth is, as it were, the subject-matter which this faculty handles, and on which it employs itself. As to the other three virtues, they necessarily consist in acquiring and preserving those things with which the conduct of life is connected, in order to preserve the community and relations of mankind, and to display that excellence and greatness of soul which exhibits itself as well in acquiring resources and advantages both for ourselves and for our friends, as, still more concpicuously, in properly disregarding them. As to order, resolution, moderation, and the like, they come into that rank of virtues which require not only an operation of the mind, but a certain degree of personal activity; for it is in observing order and moderation in those things which constitute the objects of active life, that we shall preserve virtue and decency.
VÍ. Now, of the four divisions under which I have ranged the nature and essence of virtue, that which consists in the knowledge of truth principally affects the nature of man. For all of us are impelled and carried along to the love of knowledge and learning, in which we account it glorious to excel, but consider every slip, mistake, ignorance, and deception in it, to be hurtful and shameful. In this pursuit, which is both natural and virtuous, two faults are to be avoided. The first is, the regarding things which we do not know as if they were understood by us, and thence rashly giving them our assent. And he that wishes, as every man ought to wish, to avoid this error, must devote both his time and his industry to the study of things. The other fault is, that some people bestow too much study and pains upon things that are obscure,' difficult, and even immaterial in themselves. When those faults are avoided, all the pains and care a man bestows upon studies that are virtuous in themselves, and worthy of his knowledge, will be deservedly commended. Thus we have heard how Caius Sulpicius' excelled in astronomy, and Sextus Pompeius, to my own knowledge, in mathematics; many also in logic, and more in the civil law, all which are arts that serve to investigate truth, in the pursuit of which our duty forbids us to be diverted from transacting our business, because the whole glory of virtue consists in activity. Yet this is often intermitted, and frequent are our returns to our studies. Then there is an incessant working of the mind, which, without our taking pains, is sufficient to keep us in the practice of thinking. Now, all our thoughts, and every motion of the mind, should be devoted either to the forming of plans for virtuous actions, and such as belong to a good and happy life, or else to the pursuits of science and knowledge. I have now treated of at least the first source of duty.
1 "The highest perfection of human reason is to know that there is an infinity of truth beyond its reach.”-Pascal.
VII. Now, as to the other three, the most extensive system is that by which the mutual society of mankind, and, as it were, the intercourse of life, is preserved. Of this there are two parts: justice, in which virtue displays itself with the most distinguished luster, and from which men are termed good; and allied to this, beneficence, which may likewise be termed benevolence, or liberality. Now, the chief province of justice is, that no person injure another, unless he is pro
1 "The emperor Antoninus very finely thanks the gods, that when he applied to the study of philosophy he was taught by Junius Rusticus to avoid this error. Tòv eis avròv ĎAWS ÉTlbúunca pihooopías, un εμπεσείν εις τινα σοφιστήν μηδε αποκαθίσαι επί τους συγγραφείς ή συλλογισμους αναλύειν, ή περί τα μετεωρολογικά καταγίνεσθαι: That when I applied my mind to the study of philosophy, I did not meet with a sophist for my instructor; neither did I spend my time in reading mean authors, nor was I embarrassed by the uselees studies of astrology." -Guthrie.
2 “We have, in the Roman history, a remarkable story of this nobleman, by which we may see the excellent effects of learning in a man of consideration, who knows how to time it well. For we are told, that while he served against the Macedonians, under Julius Æmilius, he foretold to the Roman soldiers an eclipse, and explained its causes, and thereby prevented the consternation they otherwise would have falle:1 into, and which, seizing the enemies, they were easily routed by the Romans."- Guthrie.
voked' by suffering wrong; next, that public property be appropriated to public, and private to individual, use.
Now, by nature no property is private, but dependent either on ancient possession (as when men formerly came into unoccupied territories); or victory (as when they have taken possession of it in war); or public constitution, contract, terms, or lot. By those, the land of Arpinum is regarded as belonging to the Arpinates; the Tusculan, to the Tusculans. The like division holds with regard to matters of private property. Thus, as every man holds his own, each should possess that portion which fell to his share of those things that by nature were common; and it follows, that no man can covet another's property without violating the laws of human society.
But (is has been strikingly said by Plato) we are not born for ourselves alone, and our country claims her share, and our friends their share of us; and, as the Stoics hold,
I “ Dictat autem ratio homini (says Grotius, de Jure Belli ac Pacis, lib. 2, cap. 20, 8 5), nihil agendum quod noceatur homini alteri, nisi, id bonum habeat aliquid propositum. In solo autem inimici dolore, ita nudè spectato, nullum est bonum nisi falsum et imaginarium : Now, reason tells men that we should do no hurt to another man, unless it is to serve somo good end, for, from the mere pain of another person, there can result no good but what is mistaken and imaginary."— Vid plura in loc. cit.
? This subject has been extensively investigated by modern moralists and jurists. Paley, in one of his chapters on property, adduces and comments upon the principal theories that have been advanced. Those of Mr. Locke, and of Paley himrelf, may be briefly given in the words of the latter. “Each man's limbs and labor are his own exclusively; by occupying a piece of ground a man inseparably mixes his labor with it, by which means the piece of ground becomes thenceforward his own, as you can not take it from him without depriving him at the same time of something which is indisputably his.” This is Mr. Locke's solution. Dr. Paley adds: “The real foundation of our right (i. e., to private property) is THE LAW OF THE LAND. It is the intention of God that the produco of the earth be applied to the use of man; this intention can not be fulfilled without establishing property; it is consistent, therefore, with his will that property be established. The land can not be divided into separate property without leaving it to the law of the country to regu. late that division; it is consistent, therefore, with the same will, that the law should regulate the division; and, consequently, 'consistent with the will of God,' or 'right,' that I should possess that share which theso regulations assign me. By whatever circuitous train of reasoning you attempt to derive this right, it must terminate at last in the will of God; the straightest, therefore, and shortest way of arriving at this will, is the best. - Paley's'" Moral and Political Philosophy," book 3, chap. 4.
all that the earth produces is created for the use of man, 80 men are created for the sake of men, that they may mutually do good to one another; in this we ought to take nature for our guide, to throw into the public stock the offices of general utility by a reciprocation of duties; sometimes by receiving, sometimes by giving, and sometimes to cement human society by arts, by industry, and by our resources.
Now the foundation of justice is faithfulness, which is a perseverance and truth in all our declarations and in all our promises. Let us therefore (though some people may think it over . nice) imitate the Stoics, who curiously examine whenco terms are derived, and consider that the word fides, or faithfulness, is no other than a performance of what we have promiser'.' But there are two kinds of injustice; the first is of those who offer an injury, the second of those who have it in their power to avert an injury from those to whom it is offered, and yet do it not. For if a man, prompted either by anger or any sudden perturbation, unjustly assaults another man, such a one seems as it were to lay violent hands on one's ally; and the man who does not repel or withstand the injury, if he can, is as much to blame as if he deserted the cause of his parents, liis friends, or his country.
Those wrongs, however, which are inflicted for the very purpose of doing an injury, often proceed from fear; as for instance, when a man who is contriving to injure another is afraid, unless he executes what he is meditating, that he may himself sustain some disadvantage ; but the great incentive to doing wrong is to obtain what one desires, and in this crime avarice is the most pervading motive.
VIII. Now riches are sought after, both for the necessary purposes of life and for the enjoyment of pleasure. But in men of greater minds the coveting of money is with a view to power and to the means of giving gratification. As M. Crassus lately used to declare, that no man who wanted to have a direction in the government had money enough, unless by the interest of it he could maintain an army. Magnificent equipages, likewise, and a style of living made up of elegance and abundance give delight, and hence the desire for money becomes boundless. Nor indeed is the
1 Fides, quia fict quod dictum est.
mere desire to improve one's private fortune, without injury to another, deserving of blame; but injustice must ever be avoided.
But the main cause why most men are led to a forgetfulness of justice is their falling into a violent ambition after empire, honors, and glory. For what Ennius observes that
“No social bonds, no public faith remains
has a still more extensive application; for where the object of ambition is of such a nature as that several can not obtain preeminence, the contest for it is generally so violent that nothing can be more difficult than to preserve the sacred ties of society. This was shown lately in the presumption of C. Cæsar, who, in order to obtain that direction in the government which the wildness of his imagination had planned out, violated all laws, divine and human. But what is deplorable in this matter is, that the desire after honor, empire, power, and glory, is generally most prevalent in the greatest soul and the most exalted genius;' for which reason every crime of that sort is the more carefully to be guarded against. But in ever species of injustice it is a very material question, whether it is committed through some agitation of passion, which commonly is shortlived and temporary, or from deliberate, prepense, malice; for those things which proceed from a short, sudden fit, are of slighter moment than those which are inflicted by forethought and preparation. But enough has been said concerning inflicting injury.
IX. Various are the causes of men omitting the deferso of others, or neglecting their duty toward them. They are either unwilling to encounter enmity, toil, or expense; or, perhaps, they do it through negligence, listlessness, or laziness ; or they are so embarrassed in certain studies and pursuits, that they suffer those they ought to protect to be neglected. IIence we must take care lest Plato's observation with respect to philosophers should be falsified: “That they 1 Milton thus expresses a similar idea :
“Fame is the spur which the clear spirit doth raise
(That last infirmity of noble mind)